The new Land Rover Discovery Vision Concept might look like a Range Rover Sport, Saab 9-7x, Ford Explorer bastardization but it's packing a seriously insane bundle of tech including laser positioning sensors, gesture-controlled everything, and oh yeah... you can drive it remotely.
The coolest of those features might be "Remote Control Drive," which literally lets somebody drive the vehicle "at very low speed while not actually seated inside it." Land Rover sees people using this "both on- and off-road, [for] coupling a trailer, to external spotting during extreme off-roading."
The off-road remote operation function is called All-Terrain Progress Control and Land Rover promises it will be "semi-autonomous."
Just went we thought the Army gets to have all the fun with robotic trucks, Land Rover wants to bring similar tech to private school parking lots.
Off-road exploring is further assisted by "Wade Aid" which measures depth in water fordings and of course that trick "transparent hood" that projects terrain onto the windshield via cameras under the grille.
The new Discovery's "Laser Referencing" will be the next evolution of parking sensors, offering extremely precise assistance in tight-space navigation.
Interior controls will be smartphone-style gesture-based glass inputs that can pipe video calls into all the seatbacks. Trick seating hinted at in the new Rover's teaser video allows seats flat to "fold flat or slide forward or back, via the touchscreen menu" converting the new Discovery from its standard seven-seat layout to a six-seat, five-seat or even a four-seat 'limousine' mode.
I repeat: you can configure the seating in this thing from the touch-screen.
"Stroller-style" luggage is integrated into the doors and accessories are integrated into seatbacks, making it sound like every inch of the new Discovery is some kind of toy.
Land Rover is calling it "a vision" of their new mid-range line, or the "Leisure SUV category" in their words. It certainly looks like a crossover, but that list of accessories is cool enough to keep me excited anyway.
This CGI render is the only image Land Rover has released of the Discovery Vision Concept so far... just casually hanging out deck of the USS Intrepid with Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic Spacecraft.
We're heading over to the boat this evening, where the SUV is actually being unveiled, to get some live-action shots and impressions for you next.